Maree Henry from Henry Trading is our contributor for this winter’s Local Eyes exhibition. Maree has run her business in the old Mahar’s Drapery building at 33 London Street since the earthquakes. Maree is an avid supporter of craftspeople and artists and often hosts small exhibitions in her carefully curated gift store.
The Mahar’s building dates from post 1870, when the ‘Great Fire’ of Lyttelton destroyed an earlier building on the site. With its hip roof, street verandah and iron cladding outside and sash windows, stunning pressed tin ceilings and wide floorboards inside, it is a wonderful reminder of early Lyttelton architecture. Along with the Library, it is the proposed new Museum’s closest neighbour, and Maree is excited about the prospect of being alongside the new Museum.
We invited Maree to choose some images from Te Ūaka’s online collection. Maree’s response illustrates the different ways in which people can engage with the Collection - we all bring our own interests and backgrounds to history and Maree’s is a unique perspective.
"Te Ūaka’s website is a fascinating place to visit while we wait for the new museum to open. There is an incredible collection of objects and photographs to peruse. To be asked to use my ‘local eyes’ and choose a few items of interest to me seemed a huge task. However, I went straight to the photographs and as I scrolled down several caught my eye immediately.
I have edited thousands of photographs over the years so I guess it was from that point of view that I made my selection. I think that these are the most interesting pictures. The photos stood out to me without the need to theorise or wonder why. I like the shapes and contrasts. The line of sailor hats, the port cut in half by shadow and Franz Josef glacier through the trees are little gems.
I think that these six quiet little pictures sit together perfectly. In these times of digital imagery and phone cameras, it is nice to remember the box brownie snaps and the moments captured by unassuming photographers decades ago.”